“19.86% of adults are experiencing a mental illness. Equivalent to nearly 50 million Americans. 4.91% are experiencing a severe mental illness”. Adult data 2022. Mental Health America. (n.d.).
Meditation can provide you with a sense of calm, peace, and balance, which can benefit your emotional well-being as well as your overall health. You can also use it to relieve stress and relax by refocusing your attention on something calming. Meditation can help you learn to stay centered and at peace within yourself.
These advantages do not end when your meditation session does. Meditation can help you navigate your day more calmly. Meditation may also aid in the management of symptoms associated with certain medical conditions.
Considering all the benefits of meditation, we wanted to take this opportunity to develop and promote the third Sustainable Development Goal, which is about "Good Health and Well-Being." We wanted to create a project that models the application based on the user's actual state and well-being.
What it does
Using Arctop’s Neuos SDK and the BCI headband, we receive the brain signals of the user. The user uses an Oculus Quest 2 to immerse themselves in a meditation session. At the same time, Neuos reads the user’s brain signals for Focus and Enjoyment which allow us to personalize their meditation experience in real-time.
How we built it
First, we started with getting Arctop’s Neuos SDK configured and working. We use two kinds of data from the brain signals—focus and enjoyment. This data is used to alter the brightness and the number of stars that appear in the meditation activity. The brightness of the stars is modified by the amount of focus and the number of stars is modified by the amount of enjoyment. After a guided meditation breathing exercise using a bubble, the user is led to a horizon view where they can visualize the stars.
Challenges we ran into
Integrating Arctop’s Neuos SDK and successfully using the data to modify game objects in Unity was challenging. The JSON library present in the SDK did not work for our version of Unity (2020.3.43f1), but it was supported for versions of Unity before 2019.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We’re very happy and proud of what we could accomplish in the short span of 2 days. We started off with a very new technology, Arctop’s Neuos SDK and BCI device, and tried to integrate it with the Oculus Quest 2. Ultimately, we were able to accomplish a working prototype and create a fully guided meditation session. We were really happy with the design of our scenes, because they were peaceful and used custom skyboxes.
What we learned
This was the first XR hackathon for most of us. We learned everything from using the XR devices to integrating data from a BCI device to work along with a Unity project. We also learned how to transition between multiple scenes and integrate audio into our project in Unity to create an immersive experience. The challenges we faced helped us understand our tech stack in detail and provided more opportunities to learn and grow. We all collectively enhanced our skills of working in a team, maintaining proper communication and setting milestones, and achieving them in an amiable environment.
What's next for MindFlow
In the future, we are excited to further integrate Arctop’s BCI data with Mindflow in order to provide a more personalized meditation environment. We also hope to add more meaningful experiences to the app, such as using ChatGPT to generate custom self-affirmation statements based on one’s lived experiences.
Built With: C#, Unity, Arctop Neuos SDK, Oculus Quest 2, VR, Figma